Al from Dadeville goes all in.

If you’re a rational human being, you can’t help but be appalled by someone deliberately poisoning a pair of 130-year old trees.

But let’s face it – what elevates this story from the merely sad to the truly bizarre is this:

… Fortunately for police – and unfortunately for Gogue’s call for civility – the prime suspect has already confessed to the deed on the record, to one of the largest and most deranged radio audiences in the South. On Jan. 27, a ‘Bama fan going by the name of “Al from Dadeville” called the hugely popular Paul Finebaum Show (for the uninitiated, think of it as a radio version of “The Jerry Springer Show” for hardcore SEC fans) expressly to gloat over his crime:

Al: This year I was at the Iron Bowl. And I saw where they put a “Scam Newton” jersey on Bear Bryant’s statue.

Finebaum: OK, now, again, that’s 28 years later.

Al: Well lemme tell you what I did. The weekend after the Iron Bowl, I went to Auburn, Alabama, because I live 30 miles away, and I poisoned the two Toomer’s trees.

Finebaum: [laughing] Well that’s fair.

Al: I put Spike 80DF in them.

Finebaum: Did they die?

Al: Do what?

Finebaum: Did they die?

Al: They’re not dead yet, but they …

Finebaum: They will be?

Al: They definitely will die.

Finebaum: Is that against the law? To poison a tree?

Al: Do you think I care?

Finebaum: No.

Al: I really don’t.

Not care?  Hell, it’s even money this guy winds up revealing himself publicly to take credit for his act before all is said and done.  Because that’s how they roll (Tide Roll) over there.


Filed under Whoa, oh, Alabama

87 responses to “Al from Dadeville goes all in.

  1. TennesseeDawg

    Al briefly made an appearance on “notable people” in Dadevillw’s wikipedia page. Stay classy, Alabama.

  2. bob

    Bama fans are not happy about this.

  3. KCDawg

    I listen to Rivals Radio on XM in the morning on my way to work in KC, which just happens to be the same station that Finebaum comes on in the afternoon. I can usually handle about 5 minutes of his drivel before I have to turn the dial. I just happened to hear this guy when he was bragging to Finebaum.

    There is almost no doubt that he’ll get caught as I’m sure the guy told bunches of people what he did, which will ultimately lead to his (rightful) downfall. I also seem to remember that he said he was a tree specialist of some kind, which should narrow the field even more.

    Yeah, I hate Auburn more than most. But this is beyond the pale.

  4. JaxDawg

    Auburn will replace the trees if they die after remediating the soil. Since money will not be an issue, they can transplant the trees in the manner in which Sea Island did it. Hopefully the expenses, coupled with the NCAA investigation, will send AU into the same black hole as the aforementioned resort.

    • hailtogeorgia

      It isn’t about replacing the trees, though, it’s the fact that the trees were 130 years old. You don’t just replace 130 year old trees.

      Can you imagine the uproar if a rival fan did this to the Hedges?

      • Dawgwalker07

        Or someplace like north campus?

      • A Different Jim

        Did it take one or two years for the Hedges to grow back when the Auburn Players and fans destroyed part of the Hedges under Pat Dye.

      • JaxDawg

        wrong. 130 year old trees can be transplanted. it is an expensive process and extremely difficult in some respects but it can be done.

        And btw, a hedge is much easier to replace than a mature tree.

        • hailtogeorgia

          Right…so “it is an expensive process and extremely difficult in some respects” means that it can simply be replaced? I see…simply must mean something different than what I thought it meant.

          As for the hedges, that wasn’t the point either. The point is that they’re a beloved tradition of the University of Georgia (as the Toomer’s Corner trees are to Auburn) and if someone were to poison the hedges, there would be a very pissed off segment of the fan base. Auburn fans aren’t pissed just because the tree is dying, they’re pissed because it’s their tradition. Even if a new 130 year old tree is brought in, it’s not the same tree…this kind of stuff matters to people. You still hear people talking about how The Tree That Owns Itself isn’t the real one, even though it is an offspring of the original.

          Seriously, though, thanks for the horticulture lesson, Chief.

          • JaxDawg

            “It isn’t about replacing the trees, though, it’s the fact that the trees were 130 years old. You don’t just replace 130 year old trees.”

            Yes you do. You find two other 130 year old trees, dig them up carefully preserving the roots, and relocate them. The word simple was never used in either of my posts. It’s not simple, but it’s not impossible either. AU can replace the trees by raising funds through a capital campaign, which will be no problem since they just won the NC (cheaters). And since no one in their right mind would replace the existing trees with infant live oaks, this is what Auburn will do.

            As for the rest, only Auburn grads state the obvious as you did.

            And next time, just ignore the post if you can’t understand it.

            • hailtogeorgia

              My apologies for thinking that you would make the semantic connection of “just replacing the trees” and “simply replacing the trees” as implying the same thing. Clearly, an intellectual thinker such as yourself would make an astute observation.

              We’ll see how the barners handle the trees, but my point was that there’s more to it than just finding two more 130 year old trees. Is it possible to do? Sure. Is it just a run of the mill procedure, as you make it sound? Absolutely not. Even if you do carefully preserve the roots, they often still don’t take to a new environment and end up dying anyway.

              “As for the rest, only Auburn grads state the obvious[,] as you did”…says the guy who ended his first post with, “and btw, a hedge is much easier to replace than a mature tree.” Nothing obvious about that, is there, pal?

              Next time, don’t be such a douche.

  5. East Cobb Devildawg

    When they find him, make sure he gets the bill for all the work that will need to be done to replace the trees. He MIGHT learn his lesson after that. Because he sure doesn’t know how to keep his mouth shut.

    • Chuck

      Send him the bill for for the work that will need to be done to replace the trees? Why? He doesn’t have any money. He gave all his money to the football program at Bama. Given his attitude, he might just take the bill and wipe with it. May as well send the bill for terrorism to Al Quaeda ass to send a bill to Al Dadeville.

      • East Cobb Devildawg

        So vandalism and destruction of property aren’t chargeable offenses? I’m pretty sure that if he’s dumb enough to admit to it on the radio then he’s dumb enough to leave some evidence that will get him convicted of the crime. This offense was a low blow, no doubt about it. The whole ordeal has the potential of going from bad to worse.

  6. Objective Bama Fan

    I speak for most Bama fans when I say this is carrying it too far. I hate Auburn as much as any decent Bama should, but I respect their tradition. I respect the traditions of all the SEC schools; traditions are what make southern football great.
    The best Bama blog speaks to this more eloquently than I can. The Bama Blog is about as good in its content as Bluto’s. I say that not as a crack at this blog, but more as a compliment to the amount and content.

  7. H-Town Dawg

    As the intellectual in Alabama once quoth: “Ignorance ain’t just a river in Egypt.” But seriously, vandalism is a crime and it’s all fun and games until some douchebag destroys something that YOU cherish. Hailtogeorgia and Dawgwalker07 are absolutely right. If some asshole messed with the Hedges or any part of North Campus there would be hell to pay.

    • Go Dawgs!

      There is a difference between a prank and vandalism. This would seem to be a more vile act of vandalism than most, because it destroys an historic landmark for the city of Auburn, not just the Auburn University football program.

  8. We all respect tradition, that is why GT should return the original bell to UGA.

    • Careful Brad

      When I heard about the trees my first thought was “That was a techish thing to do.”
      That is the one fanbase I can see doing something like this and having most of the fans support it.

  9. Brandon

    They can get him for felony trespass/damage to property. Can also sue him civilly and take his trailer and Seadoo.

    • Sanford222View

      “take his trailer and Seadoo” now that is funny. It is also a very appropriate punishment in addition to throwing his ass in prison.

  10. Toom

    This guy might not live.

  11. AlphaDawg

    What are he odds that this guys wardrobe consists of Tanktops and Camo?

  12. Dog in Fla

    History will compare the confession of Al from Dadeville with Trump’s at CPAC:

    “a speech that alternated lavish praise for Donald Trump with denunciations of various and sundry enemies. Plenty of candidates invoked Chinese menace and terrors of the new health care law. Only Trump declared his antipathy for Somali pirates.”

  13. simpl_matter

    Bet he works for a landscaping company and has an arsenal of guns. I’d also wager he’s never been out of the US, thinks this is the greatest country in the history of the world, and that all Muslims are freedom-hating terrorists. It’s monkeys like this that ruin the world for the rest of us, get some perspective you devolved hump.

    • Gravidy

      Oh, holy shit, here we go with politics again. Get ready, Senator. This post will be up to 150 comments by noon!

      • tduga1

        Politics and sports go together as well as Spike 80DF and the trees at Toomer’s.

      • simpl_matter

        mo’ money!

      • Brandon

        I’m to the point where I think we just need to draw a damn line down the middle of the country and say okay all the smarmy leftist assholes on this side and everybody else on the other. Smarmy leftist assholes, pick which side you want and we’ll take the other, we are more than happy to let you follow your vast enlightened intellects into extinction we just don’t want to go with you. Were I the President of the rest of the country my first act would be to build a huge ass wall with landmines in front of it and barbwire to keep all the people who chose smarmy leftist asshole land out of our half of the country after they had run their side into the ground. Again, pick your side, I am willing to shovel snow in Minnesota and give you the South if it means ridding ourselves of your vision and intelligence. (See East and West Germany and North and South Korea as historical comparisons).

        • NRBQ

          You need to “see East and West Germany” if you think the Germans themselves chose that plan.

          Not to be smarmy.

          • Brandon

            Did I say the Germans chose it themselves? I don’t think so. Nice straw man you got there. The point is the East was run by communists and the West was not the East was a shithole that had to build a wall in Berlin to keep its own people in and the West was not, dido North and South Korea.

            • NRBQ

              Your whole point was about “choosing” not to live with people you believe are assholes (a large group, apparently).

              East Berlin/Germany was controlled by the Russians, the West overseen by the rest of the Allies. The populace had no say in the matter. Unlike us, thank God.

        • simpl_matter

          As long as you stay away from my oak trees and generally don’t infringe on my freedoms, I’m fine with you living in a cocoon of ignorance, fear, and hate. I voted for Reagan and 40 (would’ve voted for 41 the first time, if I had my absentee ballot), what part of my comments makes me a lefty would be interesting to hear.

          I was making light of one dumb asshole by giving him the traits I consider to be the most common redneck stereotypes we southerners constantly battle with. If those traits also fit you, guess what? “You Might Be a Redneck!”

          • simpl_matter

            Woops, obviously didn’t intend this reply to you, NRBQ.

          • Brandon

            You implied that people who own guns and love their country are in the same league as this dipshit from Alabama. Sounds like you fit in quite well at a cocktail party stocked with witty Harvard law professors, community organizers, and members of Weather Underground. At least have some courage and stand by your convictions, don’t give this I voted for Reagan crap.

            • simpl_matter

              Man, are you telling me they’d let little, ole’ me into those highfalutin (look it up) circles?!? Stand by my convictions???

              Listen, it was early AM and the coffee was kicking, I was subjectively profiling Al, not Brandon. I wasn’t making an objective statement about all gun-hoarding Americans. Some of my closest friends are gun-loving, freedom-fries eating, red, white, & blue Christians. My convictions don’t lock-step with any party but, I guarantee a smarmy leftist I am not.

        • I’ve got dibs on Hawaii!😉

        • PNWDawg

          I’m sorry but are you someone who has “never been out of the US, thinks this is the greatest country in the history of the world, and that all Muslims are freedom-hating terrorists”? It seems this remark offended you. Why is it when someone who makes a remark which appears to be to the left they are always asked to go elsewhere (or propose drawing a line)? And how hard is it to peg a guy named “Al” who is a die-hard Bama fan and calls the Finebaum show to brag about killing trees? That guy’s post wasn’t far off.

          • Brandon

            Again, the guy implied that people who owned guns and love this country are in the same league with this bozo who poisoned the trees.

        • BCDawg97

          I just wanna know if it is only the left that is entitled to be a smarmy asshole?

      • Gravidy


        I have an honest question. I promise I’m not taking sides or trying to throw anyone under the bus here. In general, do you have a preference or policy about what subjects are brought up on your fine blog? Do you care if anyone brings up any of the “third rails of polite discussion” such as politics or religion.

        Earlier, I gave an indignant respons to simpl’s political comments. But then I realized it ain’t my blog, so I don’t have a lot of room to be policing it. But that made me honestly wonder what your thoughts on the subject are. Once again, I’m just trying to get information from the administrator. I enjoy your blog, and I read it every day. I’ve read it long enough to know that you and I have differing political opinions on some subjects, but that doesn’t matter. It’s your blog. You can say whatever you want. If I or anyone else disapprove, we can vote with our mice.

        • I’m a free speech guy who believes for the most part in letting somebody make an ass of him/herself, if that’s the choice, so I’m pretty much an atheist on topic matter.

          All I ask is that (1) people don’t engage in sockpuppetry; (2) people don’t spam comments they made at other blogs here; and (3) that commenters don’t bludgeon us with the same observation over and over again (particularly by hijacking comment threads). All that strikes me as more behavior than speech, which is where I draw the line.

          • Gravidy

            Gotcha. It’s your blog, so them’s the rules.

            The commentors here are on point the great majority of the time, anyway. Here’s hoping it stays that way.

    • Hogbody Spradlin

      This is the greatest country in the history of the world.

    • Dooley's Wig

      Boy, if the culprit is a moderate French Muslim–i mean a real wine and cheese guy– who eschews guns and the out of doors..and doesn’t think America is “all that”–well simpl_matter is going to have egg all over his face.

      • simpl_matter

        Yeah, anybody want to lay odds and put a wager on it?
        We’re going to find out who this guy is, if anybody thinks I missed the mark entirely, let’s put some PayPal funds on it.

        It’s pricks like Al that make everything less fun. I can’t count how many times I’ve been in Jax (after a loss, of course) and had to listen to some UGA fan talk about punching the first UF guy he hears gloating in the mouth. It’s a F-n game, nothing should be killed, beaten-up, or otherwise injured because of it (unless you want to punch yourself in the face, I’m totally fine with that).

    • Al from Dadevulle

      Nailed it except don’t work for landscaping company any longer. Messicans took my retirement job.

    • 81 Dog

      Delta is ready to fly you to Havana or Tehran or just about anywhere outside the US when you want to go. Way to take the actions of one moron in Alabama and make it into a Keith Olberman style (both in form and accuracy) rant.

  14. Go Dawgs!

    WTVM in Columbus is reporting that Auburn Police made an arrest of a 62 year old guy named Harvey Updyke for poisoning the trees. Hope he gets a War Eagle Cellmate.

  15. Gravidy

    Soooo…they just arrested some guy for poisoning the trees…and he turned out to be a guy named Al…from Dadeville…who used Spike 80DF.

    Wow. He didn’t get that stupid in only 62 years by himself. That takes a village.

    • Scott W.

      He thought he could hide in a population of 3,212.

      • RomanDawg

        The investigation might have taken 6 minutes….sir, do you know a douchebag Alabama fan named Al? Ummmm yep that’d be ol Al Updyke that lives in that thar trailer over yonder behind the Texaco. Watch out for his sister though. Ever since they got married she’s been actin plum crazy.

  16. “To make matters worse, the trees are already fragile for a number of reasons: they live well north of their usual range, they’re on a busy street corner, and they’re regularly covered in toilet paper, which someone set on fire in November after a game against the University of Georgia.”

    “We stress them even more when we light them on fire and vehicles run into them,” Keever said. “We use fire hoses to blow the toilet paper off them and that blows off a lot of buds.”
    I know everyone is entitled to their own traditions ….but it sounds like those trees can’t catch a break. I don’t understand the toilet paper in the trees as a positive thing. I remember some kids tp-ing Coach Orgels house in Warner Robins after the Valdosta game. WR lost. There were some kids that came to school that following Monday morning that weren’t very healthy looking to say the least. No one ever bothered his house after that. And no I’m not an advocate of vigilante justice. Fans sure do get out of control though.

  17. Coweta Dawg

    The guy’s Facebook page says he is a retired TX state trooper. I know people tend to forget parts of their former profession upon retirement, but this takes that maxim to the extreme.

  18. Derek

    While I find rolling trees to be likely the worst tradition in all of sports, I do recognize that there are many good and decent Auburn fans out there who are justifiably upset about this. I didn’t think it was possible for me to feel sorry for Auburn, but I do. Thanks a lot Al.

  19. Bryant Denny

    He better hope he gets a Bama grad judge. Seriously. They will make a big-time example out of him.

    I guess losing after being up 24-0 made the dude snap.

  20. MauiDawg

    I’m already a few steps ahead senator although most Hawaiians will quickly tell you they are separate
    By the way senator do you not check your email for reader questions? What happened to Erk Russell’s hall of fame nomination app?

  21. have no fear smith

    maybe this is a lemons/lemonade idea but i suggest AU consider cutting the tree trunk at +/- 7 feet , then hire a local chainsaw sculptor [s/b plenty around] to craft a life size Cam Newton standing on a bushel of money. If there are 2 trunks put Cecil on the other one.
    On big occasions they could pin $$ to the stumps in lieu of the traditional TP, using the $$ as future recruiting slush fund [just dont deposit it in Lowders bank due to FDIC concerns].

    • g proof

      they could also sell every bit of the tree, in toothpick sized shards, as keepsakes/ family heirlooms..encase in Lucite, Franklin Mint style . I suspect there is an angle for “Yella Fella ” in here too, maybe treat the splinters w Cammy Cam Juice and get an endorsement from the lovely Tracy Wolfson .
      Yella Fella gets script approval for the TV ad [romance w Tracy as subplot] and the lead, as usual.

    • Gravidy

      Even though the guy who poisoned the trees is a shitbag, this idea of yours made me laugh out loud.